The last time that the anti-lockouts group staged one of these babies, close to 15,000 of you attended, waving an ingenious variety of appropriate yet LOLworthy placards –
– and hopefully you held onto them, because Keep Sydney Open want you to dust them off for what they’ve dubbed an “urgent” second romp on Sunday 9th October, in the hopes of once again amping up the pressure on the NSW government to plz stahp killing Sydney’s nightlife.
The announcement comes one day after the results of the Callinan Review into the liberal government’s lockout laws were officially handed down, backing Keep Sydney Open’s position that the alcohol curfew had pretty much disembowled the city’s nighttime culture and economy.
“It’s good to finally hear what Sydneysiders have already known for a long time, that these laws are putting Sydney’s reputation as a dynamic, international city at risk,” says Keep Sydney Open’s Tyson Koh. “We shouldn’t have to settle for lock-them-up-and-throw-away-the-key policy solutions, when only an hour’s flight away Melbourne has created a safe and dynamic nightlife with a cool-headed smart policy.”
However, KSO reckons the review’s conservative recommendation to trial an extension of the lockout by a piddly 30-minutes is nowhere near enough to reverse the damage that’s already been done, or to save the businesses that are currently on the brink.
“With each passing day the lockouts are in place, Sydney’s cultural life is damaged, small businesses are jeopardised and our internationally recognised artistic talent is finding it harder to be paid for their work”, Koh says. “A thirty minute extension misses the point, that Sydney wants policy that encourages safe and vibrant nightlife at anytime. Major cities around the world can do it and we can too.”
ICYMI: Keep Sydney Open aren’t just calling for the lockouts to be scrapped and that’s-the-end-of-that-chapter. Their official stance is that freedom and safety are not opposing ideals and can be safeguarded at the same time, to the benefit of all.
Through extensive research and consultation with countless key stakeholders and policy makers locally and across the globe, they’ve put together recommendations for an evidence-based policy to achieve that very goal, which includes but is not limited to:
1. Developing best-practice policing strategies
2. Investing in 24/7 public transport
3. Implementing integrated urban planning reform
4. Encouraging diversification of after-dark activities
5. Establishing anti-violence education & intervention campaigns
6. Incentivising well-run venues, and
7. Appointing a Night Mayor or similar
Keep Sydney Open is campaigning to ditch the 1:30am lockout, the 3am cease of service, the 10pm bottle-o closures and the freeze of liquor license applications in inner-city entertainment districts, in conjunction with all of the above.
…Seems to make more sense then locking down the entire city (bar the Casino, of course), right?
With a bit of luck, through the combined clout of the damning Callinan Review and a blockbuster Keep Sydney Open sequel, the Baird government will actually start listening to reason instead of being all like –
“La la la la lockout laws.”
Further details about Keep Sydney Open #2 are yet to be announced, but for now you can RSVP to the official Facebook event here.
Catch images from the last big Keep Sydney Open rally below, and for an exhaustive chronology of the ongoing saga surrounding the catastrophic lockouts, check out out dedicated Lockout Laws Feed here.
Gallery: The Funniest Anti-Lockout Banners From The ‘Keep Sydney Open’ Rally